Formaggio Pollo alla Cacciatora

Posted by Unknown Friday, February 12, 2010
Taste Level: VGR
Cost: $20 and Over
Serves: 4
Prep Time: 20 min.-1 hour (depending on if you make or purchase the chicken)
Cook time: 25-30 min.
Difficulty: 1-3 (depending on if you make or purchase the chicken)

Holy Cacciatore Batman, this was good! Did you know that the meal most of us refer to as Chicken Cacciatore is in fact not chicken Cacciatore? Chicken Cacciatore was commonly referred to as Hunters Stew because it was adapted by travelers way back in the day. Depending on what the travelers may have captured for dinner (rabbit and chicken being the most common.) They needed a meal that was easy to prepare while outdoors. It's core components consisted of chicken, mushrooms and spices. The sauce was actually a brown gravy that came from cooking the chicken slowly in a pot until the meat fell from the bone. There is more than one way to get meat to fall of a bone! Also I don't think many people reading this blog are living out in the wild. Maybe they are, who knows? I am thinking about making a Original Cacciatore recipe in the crock pot but for a post later down the road. So instead of crock potting or pan frying like many modern recipes call for, we put the chicken in the rotisserie and went with a light tomato sauce! I hope you enjoy our off the beaten path version of Chicken Cacciatore! I sure did!

1 1/4 cup Garlic Rotisserie Chicken (shredded, recipe follows or purchasable at grocery store)
3 slices pancetta
1 1/3 cups penne pasta
1/4 cup dry jack cheese (shredded)
4 oz fresh mozzarella (shredded)
3 tbsp extra sharp white cheddar (shredded)
1/4 cup marinated in herbs mozzarella (shredded)
1/2 of a 14.5 oz can fire-roasted tomatoes
1/1 cup red onion (chopped)
1/4 red bell pepper (chopped)
1/4 yellow bell pepper (chopped)
1/4 orange bell pepper (chopped)
2 0z baby Bella mushrooms (sliced)
2 oz button mushrooms (sliced)
1/4 cup Merlot olives (diced, green olives can be substituted)
3/4 tsp fresh oregano (diced)
3/4 tsp fresh basil (diced)
1 tbsp sriracha
2 tbsp chicken drippings (or substitute 1 1/2 tps olive oil)
fresh crack pepper (to taste)

Garlic Rotisserie Chicken
2-3 lb whole chicken (cleaned)
10 garlic cloves (peeled and cracked open)
1 tsp Italian Volcanic lemon juice
2 tsp smoked paprika
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp essence
2 tbsp sweet European butter
1 tsp red Hawaiian sea salt
fresh crack pepper (to taste)

Stuff chicken with garlic cloves and then truss the wings and legs. Melt butter in a small sauce pan over medium low heat then stir in the lemon juice and seasonings until mixed well. Baste chicken with mixture and then place chicken into the rotisserie with a pan underneath to catch drippings. Cook for one hour basting ever 5-10 minutes until mixture is completely used.

Your chicken is ready to have the 1 1/4 cup chicken pulled from it. (Make sure you baste with the drippings if the chicken appears to be getting dry!)

In a 12 inch skillet heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the pancetta frying for 5-6 minutes or until crisping. Remove the pancetta from the pan (leave the oil,) add 2 tbsp of the chicken drippings, the onion and mushrooms cooking for 5 min, then stir in the dry seasonings, bell peppers and tomatoes. Let simmer for 7 minutes and then stir in chicken, sriracha, oregano and basil continuing to simmer for 5- 7 minutes more.

While sauce is simmering prepare your penne by following the directions on the package.

Stir pasta, olives, fresh crack pepper and cheeses into sauce and let simmer for 5-7 minutes before serving hot!


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